550% Come; 50% Don't
C.B.S. News Sunday Morning Program (Oct. 6, 2009) had an interesting segment on “Faith in America”. Some of their insights were:
“Americans shop for churches like they shop for everything else. They are consumers. It is what is best for me.” Wow! What does that say about us of Christian faith of loving your neighbor as yourself? Have we become “me”-centered believers. Hmmmm a topic for another blog!
“According to today’s Parade Magazine’s report ½ of the people who attend churches do not go to the church in which they were raised.” I personally have gone to six different churches, all under different denominations or labels, since I left the church of my childhood although I still keep ties with that church.
According to the same poll “Americans say they are “spiritual” rather than “religious”, and only “50% of those claiming to be spiritual attend services”, and here I am on a Sunday morning writing this blog while my home church is having a “service”.
So there may be something to these polling facts, at least they have affected my life. I thought it interesting that when I am questioning the relevancy of “Sunday morning church services” this report is released. Many church’s marquees boast “Sunday Worship Service” and times, now offering different “styles” of worship, contemporary or traditional, to reach the American Christian “consumer”. Music styles may vary, but structure hasn’t as music and the sermon are still the anchor of church services. Choirs have been replaced by Worship Bands, pipe organs by electric guitars, but the sermon is still monopolized by the clergy.
I find myself going to a service that requires nothing from me but my tithes, my money, and possibly singing along with the worship band if I know the songs or tune. We shake hands, pat backs, greet one another superficially for five minutes, but that is my spiritual community social life for the week.
Why have I fallen into the 50% category the pollsters have recorded? In my next blog, I would like to share a possible mindset change the church should face that may attract believers back and accountability to their believers.